Cream vs. Liquid Concealer & When to Use Each

Cream vs. Liquid Concealer

After foundation, concealer is the most popular makeup product we use for coverage. We use concealer to neutralize dark circles, fine lines around the eyes, and under-eye bags. We also use it for concealing imperfections on the face. While liquid concealers take more space on the shelves at Sephora, cream concealers have been around long enough to make up a following. They wouldn’t be around if nobody was buying them, would they? So what’s the appeal? Well, it’s about functionality. Here’s how liquid and cream concealers differ and when to use each.

Liquid Concealer

Liquid concealer is the mainstream type of concealer. It usually comes in a tube and with a doe foot applicator. Liquid concealers aren’t literally liquid but more runny with a melting consistency.

From weightless to slightly creamy, they come in various textures. They offer sheer, light, medium, and full coverage and come in natural, matte, and dewy finishes.

A liquid concealer is easy to use and apply, especially for the under-eye area as the applicator is convenient for hard-to-reach areas such as the inner corners of the eyes.

You can choose a liquid concealer based on your skin type such as oil-free for acne-prone skin or creamy for dry skin. Typically, a liquid concealer needs to be a few shades lighter than your skin tone to create that bright, fresh look, especially when used for the under-eyes.

Cream Concealer

Cream concealer is a less common form of concealer and is usually more popular among makeup artists. It comes in a pot without an applicator. It has an emollient consistency and feels a bit thicker and heavier than liquid concealer. That’s why you only need a tiny amount!

Cream concealers are all about coverage. So most of them offer full coverage. While they work for the under-eye area, they are actually better for concealing imperfections on the face. Whether it’s acne, dark spots, or redness, cream concealer is superior for spot-concealing blemishes.

This type of concealer is very spot on, meaning that you don’t need to blend and blend to make it look natural. It just needs a bit of dabbing in place to do its magic.

Cream concealer can feel heavy if you have oily skin, which you can manage by using small amounts. While there are matte finish options, an average cream concealer usually has a radiant finish because of its emollient consistency. For that reason, cream concealers can work wonders for dry skin or mature skin.

Which One to Choose

While there are differences between liquid and cream concealers, they are essentially concealers. They do the same thing. Both help reduce the visibility of discolorations, uneven skin texture, and uneven skin tone. On the other hand, I think they both deserve a place in a makeup bag.

We choose an under-eye concealer shade to be about 2 shades lighter than our skin tone. That’s how it helps brighten our under-eye area. But a light shade concealer may not work as effectively to conceal skin problems like acne on the face. That’s why I prefer using a light-shade under-eye concealer and a skin-colored cream concealer for my face.

Again, cream concealers have a thicker consistency like a cream foundation. That’s why they are perfect for creating a smooth, flawless-looking skin. But that’s also why they can look cakey when you use them for the under-eye area as that area is very animated.

So ideally, you want to go for a liquid concealer for the eyes and a cream concealer for the rest of the face like cheeks and forehead. Plus, cream concealer is perfect for foundation-free makeup where you can just dab away the discolorations without needing anything else.

But in the end, if you don’t need a lot of coverage for the face, you don’t want to spend more than you need to, a simple liquid concealer will be more than enough for daily use.

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